Unlimited club soda on your boat is a must-have. Finding club soda isn’t always easy, sometimes it isn’t available at all. Club soda can also be very expensive. Almost the same price as beer in some places.
Buy a SodaStream For Unlimited Club Soda on Your Boat
We bought a SodaStream to make our own club soda. Now we always have club soda onboard. We use the club soda from our SodaStream for boat cocktails and for soda drinks for our kids. You don’t need to worry about finding syrups either. I have yet to find a local grocery store where there isn’t a good range of juice concentrates. In my opinion, the local juice concentrates are tastier than the soda stream brand name syrups.
Local juice concentrates normally aren’t artificially sweetened which is great, you can get low-calorie options too. Not only do you save money by making your own club soda, but it is so convenient. No more carrying club soda to your boat as part of your provisioning. For more must-have items in the galley, you can read our post.
Refilling SodaStream Cylinders
Unfortunately, not all places have the ability to recharge the SodaStream Co2 Cylinders. In countries where they sell SodaStream, you can often get refills at the local supermarket. Many yacht agents especially in the Caribbean will fill SodaStream canisters for a reasonable price.
Some cruisers refill soda stream bottles with dry ice. Unfortunately, dry ice is not always readily available either. We bought a 20lb CO2 cylinder and an adapter that allows us to fill our SodaStream cylinders.
It is very easy to use, first you attach the connection adapter to the cylinder. Once this is done you attach the SodaStream canister to the adapter. Next, slowly open the first valve. The bottle then makes kind of a rattling sound as the canister fills up. When purchasing this system make sure you buy the correct adapter for your type of SodaStream cylinder as there are a few different connector styles for various countries around the world. Fortunately, the type of bottle sold in the US is the kind most frequently found around the world.
It can be tricky getting your big CO2 cylinder filled in French territories as they use a different connector. But with a bit of effort, we have always managed to work it out. Because you are going to drink the club soda, make sure the CO2 canister is filled with food-grade CO2. We bought our CO2 cylinder in the US and had it shipped to us. Most countries only rent the bottles and won’t sell them to the public so you should think about buying one before your set off.
This Is The System We Use to Fill Our SodaStream Cylinders
One Last Suggestion
If you go the SodaStream route I suggest you buy additional Carbonating bottles and additional SodaStream CO2 cylinders, we have three. And each Cylinder lasts us about three weeks of heavy use. With three refills we only have to break out the big tank about once every two months.
I also keep three water bottles in the fridge that way I always have cold water to make club soda with. We find that the 20lb bottle lasts for a year with two children and two adults drinking as much sparkling water as we want. For us, this system is a boat cocktail essential and I would not want to be without it.
UPDATE: 4 February 2021 Our cylinder of CO2 lasted a year and a half with us making about 3-4 bottles of SodaStream soda a day. Tahiti Gaz in Papeete, Tahiti, French Polynesia just filled our CO2 tank for $142. This included the mandatory tank inspection fee of $70 for foreign tanks. That’s less than 10 cents a litre/ quart. Not bad at all.
A further bit of information. If you are crossing the Pacific to French Polynesia. Once you get to French Polynesia and onwards they only sell and fill Australian bottles. If you like club soda I strongly suggest you get yourself a refill kit and CO2 tank for your SodaStream